The county will pay $92.5 million of its $1.9 billion budget toward that liability for the current fiscal year, according to the April 10 report. To put that number in perspective, over that same period, the county is paying $89.7 million for Sheriff's Office services, $83 million for capital projects, and $56.6 million for road construction and operation, the report says.
Over the past four years, annual payments to pensioners from the pension fund, known as SamCERA, have risen 34 percent to $139.2 million. The median annual benefit per retired employee is $23,981, the report says. Twenty-four of those retirees receive $150,000 to $199,000 and five receive over $200,000.
The grand jury accuses the county of consistently overestimating the annual return on its independently managed $2.3 billion investment portfolio. The most recent projection is an annual return of 7.5 percent, but over 10 years, the rate has been 5.54 percent a year, the report says.
That return compares poorly to the 7.6 percent annual return for 69 of the largest college endowment funds over 10 years, the report says.
Got to tinyurl.com/Jury-201 to read the grand jury's report.